"Travel for three days to Caño Cristales from Bogotá. We organize all details for your trip to this unique place in the world so that you can enjoy without any logistic worries"
Get up at first lights, have breakfast and meet our driver at the hotel entrance to take you to the airport by 9:00 am. You will fly for about an hour to La Macarena, a village located in southern region of Colombia that once was unthinkable to visit due to the internal conflict, but now has become an important touristic hub. La Macarena is a good example of social empowerment from a community who has managed to work together in order to preserve and benefit from the natural treasure they have just a few miles away: Caño Cristales.
After being picked up at the airport by your local guide, you will be taken to a mandatory 30-minute brief given by Cormacarena, the tourism bureau of the place. After that, you will walk for 10 minutes through the village to La Cascada Hotel: a clean and basic hotel with a smiling staff and comfortable rooms. Put your hiking shoes on because the action starts from now on. After you settle in, you will have lunch and our local guide will pick you up and you will embark a boat that will take you up the Guayabero River for 25 minutes. After that, you will walk for about an hour and reach Caño Cristalitos, an amazing natural spa with small ponds filled with the characteristic algae that give this river its rainbow-like look. For those with a better physical shape, the visit will go to El Mirador, a point where you will enjoy of an amazing view of the wild savannah bordered with the Macarena Mountain Range (1.5 hours hike up to the top of a mountain). In the afternoon, you will get back to the hotel and have dinner at La Macarena.
Today you will visit the main sector of Caño Cristales River. After having breakfast at the hotel, our guide will pick you up and after about an hour transport by boat and jeep, you will get to the starting point of the hike that will take you to Caño Cristales. This hike has different levels and can be from 30 minutes to 4 hours. Once you reach the river, you will visit many different spots; you will have the chance to swim and relax at the Willy Wonka-like ponds and enjoy your box lunch at the site. In the afternoon, you will have time to rest at the hotel before the dinner event where we will enjoy a “ternera a la llanera” a typical beef preparation of the Colombian flatlands while listening to a live band of “joropo”, the characteristic music of that part of Colombia.
On your last day at La Macarena, you will visit Los Pilones, which is a scenic hike through a stone canon with lush green vegetation. A true delight for outdoor lovers. Alternatively, we will visit Caño Pedra, another good spot for taking a bath at a crystal-clear water river in the in the middle of the vast savannah (this doesn’t entail hiking). At the end of the hike, you will visit a new section of the river and you will be back at La Macarena for lunchtime. In the afternoon, you will get back to Bogotá. Upon arrival, a driver will pick you from the airport and take you to your Bogotá hotel.
The season where the plants that give Caño Cristales its color only grow from June to November, which is the rain season. We don't recommend travel to Caño Cristales before June or after November because you probably won't enjoy the scenery (the river will be dry and thus without plants). Please keep that in mind, when you plan your trip!
Bring hiking shoes and an additional pair to keep clean and dry. During June to November, the chances of rain are high, so bring a rain jacket. Don’t forget to bring a canteen. Long sleeve shirt and large pants are recommended. Try to avoid jeans. Also, don't forget your cap. Bring a light towel and of course, your swimsuit. It would help to have a small backpack for the daily hikes.
In Caño Cristales and Caño Cristalitos it is forbidden to use sunscreen and mosquito repellent but you can use them for the rest of the trip.
The tours are run on small groups of 8 participants max. You will be assigned to a group that has the same hiking level as you. The program on day 1 and 3 will be adapted according to your level. On day 2 (Caño Cristales), there are several routs in the reserve that vary on length. Your will be assigned to a rout according to your hiking level.
If day 3 is Wednesday, the flight back to Bogota leaves at 10:00am. For this reason, the activity offered for this day is a sunrise trip at the Guayavero river.
Don’t expect luxury. We have made site visits in the look for the best available hotels and alimentation, but the truth is that the services are very basic. The highlight of the trip is 100% nature! All meals are provided by the restaurant of the hotel (was the best option we found) and there are not hot showers.
There are 3 taxes that must be paid that are not included in price. One upon arrival to the airport CO$ 37,000, another at the operating office next to the hotel CO$87,000 and another one at the airport on the departure CO$6,000.
Changes on the tour may occur due to external factors. These changes will be notified to you with anticipation.
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